This Week in Michigan Men's Golf: NCAA Washington Regional
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Thu-Sat., May 14-16 -- at NCAA Washington Regional (Bremerton, Wash.)
Washington Regional | Live Scoring | NCAA Men's Golf | Gold Mountain Golf Club
Next on the Tee: NCAA Washington Regional
Postseason play continues! For the first time in four years, the University of Michigan men's golf team will return to an NCAA regional as a team. The Wolverines will head to Bremerton, Washington, Thursday through Saturday, May 14-16, for the NCAA Washington Regional site. One of six regional sites, the 54-hole event, featuring 14 teams and five individuals, will be played at the Gold Mountain Golf Club. The regional will be played in a 5-count-4 format with the course set up for a par of 72 at 7,115 yards.
The NCAA Washington Regional Field
The NCAA Washington Regional is comprised of 14 teams and five individuals, including No. 1 seed South Carolina, No. 2 Washington, No. 3 Southern Cal, No. 4 Baylor, No. 5 UAB, No. 6 TCU, No. 7 Iowa State, No. 8 Sam Houston State, No. 9 Michigan, No. 10 UC Davis, No. 11 VCU, No. 12 Pepperdine, No. 13 Cleveland State and No. 14 South Dakota. There will be five individuals competitors in the Washington Regional: Byron Meth (Pacific), Jose Mendez (Minnesota), Alex Franklin (Oregon State), Jordan Rodgers (BYU) and James Fahy (Gonzaga).
Additional NCAA Regional Sites
• California Regional: The Farms Golf Club (Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.) -- San Diego host
• Connecticut Regional: The Course at Yale (New Haven, Conn.) -- Yale host
• Indiana Regional: The Sagamore Club (Noblesville, Ind.) -- Ball State host
• North Carolina Regional: UNC Finley Golf Course (Chapel Hill, N.C.) -- North Carolina host
• Texas Regional: The Rawls Course (Lubbock, Texas) -- Texas Tech host
Advancing to the NCAA Finals
From each of the six NCAA regional sites, the top five teams and low individual not on a qualifying team will advance to the NCAA Championships, to be held Friday through Wednesday, May 29-June 3, at the Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Florida.
The NCAA Washington Regional Schedule
Tuesday, May 12 -- Travel Day
Wednesday, May 13 -- Practice Round (18), 9 a.m. PDT
Thursday, May 14 -- First Round (18), tee times off No. 1, 8:55 a.m. PDT
Friday, May 15 -- Second Round (18), tee times off No. 10, 8 a.m. PDT
Saturday, May 16 -- Final Round (18), tee times based on position, 7:30 a.m. PDT
The NCAA Washington Regional Pairings
The ninth-seeded Wolverines will play with seventh-seed Iowa State and eighth-seed Sam Houston State during the first and second rounds. The final day's pairings will be determined by team position.
The NCAA Washington Regional Lineup
Michigan will have five players travel to the NCAA Washington Regional, including Kyle Mueller, junior Chris O'Neill,sophomore Reed Hrynewich, sophomore Bryce Evon and sophomore Tom Swanson.
U-M's NCAA Experience
Chris O'Neill is the only Wolverine to have NCAA postseason experience after being invited to play in the 2014 NCAA Central Regional as an individual. Playing at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois, he tied for 20th with a 225 (77-71-77) total, just missing advancing to the NCAA Final by three shots.
Michigan at NCAA Regionals
The NCAA regional selection marks U-M's 38th overall NCAA postseason appearance and the program's eighth team regional since the format changed to regional play. In addition to the upcoming Washington Regional (2015), the Wolverines have participated in six Central Regionals (1995, '97, 2000, '08, '10, '11) and one Southwest Regional (2009). U-M has made 22 trips to the NCAA Finals have won back-to-back national crowns in 1934 and 1935 and has four runner-up titles (1943, '45, '46, '52).
History at the NCAA Regional
1995: Central - 12th (890)
1997: Central - 8th (874)
2000: Central - t-11th (866)
2008: Central - t-12th (904)
2009: Southwest - 5th (888) - advanced to NCAA Finals
2010: Central - t-6th (848)
2011: Central - 1st (841) - advanced to NCAA Finals
• Michigan posted five top-five finishes in its 11 events during the regular season, including winning the Wolverine Intercollegiate (Sept. 6-7) and collecting runner-up finishes at the Big Ten Match Play Championship (Feb. 14-15) and the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate (March 6-7). The Wolverines finished 11th at the Big Ten Championships (April 24-26).
• U-M nearly won its second straight Big Ten Match Play Championships, losing a heartbreaker to Illinois, 3-2, in the title match. Overall, Kyle Mueller paced the Wolverines with a 4-0 record, while Brett McIntosh had a 1-0-1 mark. Chris O'Neill and Andrew Yeager each went 2-1, while Tom Swanson was 2-2, and Reed Hrynewich closed 1-2-1. U-M defeated Wisconsin (2-1-2), Ohio State (3-2) and Iowa (4-1) to advance to the final for the second straight year.
• Michigan has continued to play match-play events on a regular basis just in case the Wolverines reach the newly formatted team finals like in 2009. After advancing to the NCAA Finals that season, the Wolverines finished sixth to advance to the match play. U-M opened with a dramatic 3-2 win over USC before dropping a 3-1-1 match to eventual national champion Texas A&M.
Career Match Play Records for the U-M NCAA Starting Five
Kyle Mueller (4-0)
Chris O'Neill (7-7)
Reed Hrynewich (2-3-2)
Bryce Evon (2-1)
Tom Swanson (3-4)
• As a team, Michigan is averaging 74.44 per round individually. Kyle Mueller leads U-M with a 72.90 per-round average, while Chris O'Neill is just behind at 73.19, which is just above his career best -- 73.03 (2013-14). Reed Hrynewich is third on the team, lowering his scoring average by one-and-a-half strokes to a career-best 74.46.
• Michigan has posted an average of 293.74 per round as a team, which currently ranks as the fourth-lowest all-time. The Wolverines have used the final round as their top round of the season, improving nearly six strokes from the fall to the spring. In the five fall events, U-M closed with a 294.80 final-round average, only to dramatically improve in the five spring final rounds, posting a 288.80 average.
• Kyle Mueller became the 26th Wolverine to be named to the All-Big Ten team, earning second team honors. In his first season, he has paced the Maize and Blue in seven events, including a win in his first collegiate start -- the Wolverine Intercollegiate (Sept. 6-7). He leads U-M with nine sub-par rounds, including a career-best four-under 67 in the first round of the Wolverine Intercollegiate. His per-round scoring average of 72.90 ranks ninth best all-time at U-M and more than a half stroke better than the freshman record (73.54) set by Matt Thompson in 2008-09.
• With his start at the Big Ten Championships, Chris O'Neill increased his consecutive-event streak to 35 starts; he has yet to miss an event in three seasons. He is expected to start his 36th straight event this weekend at the NCAA regional. In 35 career events, he has 14 top-20 finishes, with nine among the top 10 and six in the top five -- including an individual title at the 2013 Windon Memorial Classic (Sept 22-23).
• Chris O'Neill and Kyle Mueller are the only Wolverines to start all 11 events this season. Reed Hrynewich has started 10 events this season, while Bryce Evon has eight nods, and Tom Swanson has five.
• Chris O'Neill re-invented his swing during the winter months, and it paid off in the spring as he posted a season-best runner-up finish at the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate (March 6-7). O'Neill posted a season-best six-under 210 tally en route to the second-place finish.
• Chris O'Neill carded a career-best and U-M season-low six-under 65 during first round of the Wolverine Intercollegiate, besting his previous career low by one stroke. En route to the shooting his best round, he posted four birdies, one eagle and 13 pars on the U-M Golf Course. This season, O'Neill owns two of the top single-round tallies with his 65 (-6) and a 66 (-6) shot in the third round of the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate (March 6-7).
• Reed Hrynewich finished as the top Wolverine for the first time in his career at the Puerto Rico Classic (Feb. 22-24). He is the first golfer other than Chris O'Neill and Kyle Mueller to lead U-M at an event this season. Overall, Hrynewich has started 10 events this season and has maintained a career-best stroke average pace of 74.46 per round, shattering last year's average of 76.00. The lefty has six sub-par rounds, including a career-best five-under 67 in the second round of the Puerto Rico Classic.
• Bryce Evon has started all eight of the events he qualified for this season and is averaging a career-best 74.84 per round. This season he has fired a season-low 69 (-1) in the second round of the Windon Memorial Classic (Sept. 21-22), leading to a career-best 54-hole tournament total of 213 (72-69-72). He also played in his first Big Ten Championships, tying for 42nd with a 305 tally.
• Tom Swanson has played in seven overall events this season with five starts. After battling a thumb injury as a freshman, he has posted a career-best 75.33 scoring average this season. He shot a career-best 70 (-1) in the second round of the MacKenzie (Oct. 13-14), which led to a career-best 54-hole total of 219 (75-70-74).
LAST TIME OUT
Led by junior Chris O'Neill's 17th-place individual finish, Michigan tallied a 1,208 team total to finish 11th at the Big Ten Championships (April 24-26) at Victoria National in Newburgh, Indiana. The Wolverines posted team rounds of 307, 308, 286 and 307. [ Recap ]
Fri-Wed., May 29-June 3 -- at NCAA Finals (Bradenton, Fla.)